Isla San Jose is the second largest of the islands and considered the 'Pearl' among the ninety pearls in the Pearl Archipelago. Considering the short distance from any point in Panama, Isla San Jose offers a lot more than meets the eye. It’s that special place for those with a sense of adventures, or simply, to break away from it all; a place where time is not an issue. The island consists of 14,000 acres (44 km2) of virgin tropical rain forest. Over 35 splendorous coral white, ebony black and radiant gold sandy beaches surround San Jose Island, including intimate coves affording quiet anchorages in the turquoise-blue waters of the Gulf of Panamá. With crystal clear ocean waters, rich in marine life, it offers a special place for sunbathing, snorkel a virgin reef, whale watching or fishing . You will also encounter a wide variety of marine life such as, mud crabs, blue crabs and rock oysters amongst others. Primordial forest cover the gently rolling hills which rise to 135 meters (450 ft.) above sea level, giving panoramic views of San Jose Island and the rest of the archipelago.
There is a vast array or wild life, including iguanas, macaws, dwarf ant eaters, countless birds, reptiles, dark-lipped peccaries, turtles and two different species of deer.
ISLA SAN JOSE
What can we say? Just like Cebaco Bay, Isla San Jose is one of the more overlooked locations that is surprisingly close in to the city. The numerous islands and rocky outcrops surrounded by crystal clear water offers some of the best jigging and popping in Panama. In fact the infamous Tropic Star Lodge fish these same waters.
Over the years we have marked literally dozens of prime jigging locations in the archipelago that hold an incredible variety of gamefish that probably have not seen a jig or popper. Of particular note is that this is one of the few areas that you can jig for Cubera Snappers. It is also home to an incredible population of Amberjacks and Almaco jacks. All is less than 150' of water. In fact most of our best locations are in the 100-200' deep range, so fishing light tackle fishing is possible. A recent group recorded an amazing 27 different species of fish in 5 days of fishing.
The pristine blue water near offshore are home to marauding wahoo, dorado and other pelagics. Ranging a little further offshore we encounter sailfish, marlin and huge schools of tuna as they migrate up and down the coast.
Whether is fast jigging, slow pitch style jigging for demersal species like Broomtail Groupers, Snappers, Amberjacks or popping the rocky coasts for Cuberas, Roosterfish, Blue Jacks and Big Eye Jacks. Isla San Jose is a location that you do not want to miss.
Hacienda Del Mar
Hacienda Del Mar Eco Village is located on the secluded San Jose Island. Each cabana has its own balcony, offering breathtaking views of the Pacific Ocean. The triple cabin gives visitors a view of the canopy of the forest.
Our clubhouse is built 75 feet above the Pacific Ocean upon a majestic point with picturesque ocean and beach views at every turn. It features a full restaurant, serving delicious breakfasts, lunches, and dinners – including local tropical fruits and fresh seafood. In fact, fish, crab, and lobster are caught just off the island daily. The views of the “Three Monks” – a set of three spectacular rock formations located half a mile from the resort in the Pacific Ocean, are fantastic. Additionally, humpback whales can often be seen right from the clubhouse, pool, and beach as well.
Hacienda Del Mar sits on private island with no native human population, it has been unspoiled due to the restriction of all hunting for many years. There is a population of over 3,000 wild pigs, large quantities of deer, black and green iguanas, agoutis, parrot and giant pigeons. In fact, there are over 100 species of birds on San Jose Island and neighboring waters.
The beaches are used by many sea turtles for the purpose of nesting and laying of their eggs. You may see some or all the following animals during your stay on the island: white-tailed deer, white-brocket deer (endemic), wild boards, crocodiles, iguanas, neques, “cocalecas”, pigeons, rabiblancas, red head parrots, yellow head parrots, and many more.
Hacienda del Mar offers a variety of places to take refuge, Our 14 cane cottages are rustic looking but invitingly luxurious, they are very comfortable with small touches like nightly turndown services. All rooms have good toiletries, high thread–count sheets, comfortable mattresses, and fluffy pillows.
Ten standard cottages are equipped with two queen-sized beds and hacienda–style armoires and nightstands set atop cool terracotta tiles. The ceiling fans together with the steady breeze usually render the air conditioning inessential. Wooden louvered and screened windows open up to rear balconies with views of the Pacific and of the beach on the west side.
Our Suites have king–sized beds, minibars, coffeemakers, and granite counter bathrooms.
The Junior Suites are not bigger than Standards but offer more privacy. One clings to the south–facing bluff, while another sits slightly uphill within a small field.
Our two VIP cottages perch precariously over the water on the property's southwestern edge, number 12 commanding a nice beach view. Our VIP cottages feature large living areas topped with white paneled as opposed to cane ceilings and more spacious bedrooms.
What is paradise with some of the best food in Panama? Our world class chefs prepare everything fresh daily and much of our seafood like fish, shrimp, lobster and crab is sourced locally from artisanal fishermen. What we cannot get locally is flown in fresh from the mainland on our regular charter flights from Albrook. Fresh local fruits are a mainstay at our resort as our island is planted with thousands of exotic fruit trees including one of the best collections of mango species in Panama. We also have our own organic honey production facility that provides pollinators for our fruit trees and a constant supply of amazing fresh honey.